1 SCRANTON CITY COUNCIL MEETING
7 Tuesday, March 10, 2009
10 Council Chambers
11 Scranton City Hall
12 340 North Washington Avenue
13 Scranton, Pennsylvania
CATHENE S. NARDOZZI, RPR - OFFICIAL COURT REPORTER
2 CITY OF SCRANTON COUNCIL:
MR. ROBERT MCGOFF, PRESIDENT
6 MS. JUDY GATELLI, VICE-PRESIDENT
MS. JANET E. EVANS (Not present.)
9 MS. SHERRY FANUCCI
MR. WILLIAM COURTRIGHT
12 MS. KAY GARVEY, CITY CLERK
MR. NEIL COOLICAN, ASSISTANT CITY CLERK
15 MR. AMIL MINORA, SOLICITOR
1 (Pledge of Allegiance recited and moment of reflection
3 MR. MCGOFF: Roll call, please.
4 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.
5 (Mrs. Evans not present.)
6 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli.
7 MS. GATELLI: Here.
8 MR. COOLICAN: Ms. Fanucci.
9 MS. FANUCCI: Here.
10 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
11 MR. COURTRIGHT: Here.
12 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
13 MR. MCGOFF: Here. Let the record
14 reflect that Mrs. Evans called before and
15 indicated that she will not be at tonight's
16 meeting due to illness. Dispense with the
17 reading of the minutes.
18 MS. GARVEY: THIRD ORDER. NO
19 BUSINESS AT THIS TIME.
20 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mrs. Garvey.
21 Any announcements?
22 MS. GATELLI: Yes, I have some,
23 Mr. McGoff. On Sunday, March 29, from one
24 to eight at Novak's Food and Spirits on
25 Boulevard Avenue in Dickson City there will
1 a pasta dinner. All proceeds will benefit
2 Ryan's Memorial Fund. Ryan Mason Mehalchick
3 died unexpectedly in his sleep after his
4 first birthday. His grandmother, Dolly, was
5 one of the directors at the Lackawanna
6 County Commission on Drug and Alcohol Abuse
7 for the county, so we would like to see
8 everyone support this effort.
9 The spring festival of St. Francis
10 of Assisi Church will also be Sunday,
11 March 29 from noon to four. There will be
12 polenta and meatballs or rigatoni and
13 meatballs, and adults is $8.50.
14 I would just like to compliment the
15 Scranton Police Department and also the
16 District Attorney's Office for their
17 expeditious arrest of the vandals in South
18 Scranton that have sprayed graffiti
19 throughout the courts in lower South Side.
20 They also were up in the Connell Park area
21 and the district attorney was up in that
22 area, also, so we would like to praise their
23 efforts for attacking that in an expeditious
25 I would also like to comment on the
1 arrest of Darak Williams and Kashema
2 Reddish. The people that were accused of
3 beating the three-year-old Kavannah Salvador
4 to death last year. I reported last meeting
5 that District Attorney Gene Talerico had
6 asked us to watch America's Most Wanted on
7 Saturday night. I hope you watched it, it
8 was an excellent show, and lo and behold on
9 Sunday they were arrested in Buffalo, New
10 York, so it pays to have things on America's
11 Most Wanted.
12 The St. Patrick's Day parade is this
13 Saturday at 11:45. It starts at the 200
14 block of Wyoming Avenue. I would just
15 encourage everyone who is attending to
16 please watch your open containers and I hope
17 that the bars will do what they did last
18 year and open a little later. It's very
19 disconcerting when you have your children
20 and grandchildren there and people are
21 drinking and vomiting, you know, around your
23 So, please, if all of the bars abide
24 by what they did last year, and I believe it
25 was the district attorney that asked them
1 and council to do that, not to open very
2 early in the morning like they had in the
3 previous years, and you know, several years
4 ago we did have a death as a result of the
5 parade and the drinking, so I would like to
6 caution everyone to please, please watch
7 your alcohol intake and stay away from the
8 parade if you are in that condition.
9 The Actor's Circle is starting the
10 play "You Can't Take It With You." It's on
11 March 20 to the 22n, and the 27th to the
12 29th, Friday and Sunday at 8:00, Sunday at
13 2:00 at the Providence Playhouse.
14 And the last thing I have to
15 announce is I don't know if too many of you
16 have heard about it, but there is plans to
17 put an Ethanol plant in Taylor. They have
18 been meeting in Taylor for several meetings
19 now with the planning commission and Taylor
20 Council. The South Side Residents
21 Association has also met concerning that
22 issue because it will be right across the
23 river from South Scranton. At our last
24 meeting we did have people from Taylor and
25 people from West Scranton attend our
1 meeting. We are keeping our eyes open for
2 what is going to happen and I can assure you
3 that anything that's going to happen in
4 South Scranton will be fought vigorously by
5 our neighborhood association and we are
6 working with several people in West
7 Scranton, also, because it is going to
8 effect our two neighborhoods directly, so
9 I'll keep you posted on that. And that's
10 all I have. Thank you.
11 MR. MCGOFF: Anyone else? Two things
12 before we go to citizen's participation. I
13 would like to recognize in attendance
14 members of Boy Scout Troop Seven from the
15 Valley View Terrace apartments who are here
16 this evening with this us I believe gaining
17 their citizenship in the community badge.
18 Thank you for your attendance.
19 Also, an announcement that next
20 week's meeting has been rescheduled to
21 Monday evening, the 16th, at 6:30. Please
22 mark it down. Next week's meeting will be
23 on Monday evening rather than Tuesday.
24 I'd also like to mention that during
25 our caucus Mrs. Darcy and Mr. Migliorie were
1 here and showed us the new equipment that
2 has been purchased for the chamber. The
3 cameras and the equipment that operates it,
4 I have no idea how it works, but it was
5 pretty impressive state of the art for
6 cameras and remotely controlled from in
7 there somewhere.
8 If there is anyone that at some
9 point in time would like to look at the
10 equipment, please, you know, just at the end
11 of the meeting or whatever check with the
12 people from ECTV and I'm sure they would be
13 happy to show you what it has been purchased
14 and what is being utilized in the city hall
15 and council chambers, and that's all, and
16 fourth order. Citizens' participation.
17 Bill Jackowitz.
18 MR. JACKOWITZ: Good evening, Council
19 President, council members. Bill Jackowitz,
20 South Scranton resident, member of the
21 Scranton Taxpayers' Association. Well, it's
22 been a long hard nine months with ECTV.
23 Let's hope they finally got everything in
24 order now and let's hope that the cameras
25 work and let's press on with the public
2 Okay, unemployment, a favorite
3 subject as you all know. Unemployment, 8
4 percent locally, 8.1 percent nationally.
5 Finally, the nation has a higher
6 unemployment rate than the
7 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazelton metropolitan
8 area. Although our region had a full 1
9 percent higher unemployment rate than the
10 State of Pennsylvania, I would like to thank
11 James Haggerty of the Scranton Times-Tribune
12 for his front page article Sunday, 8 March
13 2009, "Northeast Pennsylvania no stranger to
14 hard times."
15 I've been speaking about the
16 horrible economic conditions for five years.
17 On many occasions I have stated that this
18 has been an ongoing situation for over five
19 decades. Mr. Haggerty points that out in
20 his article, several examples. He points
21 out an old adage about the Scranton area.
22 When the national economy catches a cold
23 Scranton gets pneumonia.
24 In 1978 the national unemployment
25 rate, and please, I hope everyone pays
1 attention to these figures, in 1978 the
2 national unemployment rate was 6.3 percent,
3 the local rate 8 percent. In 1982 the
4 national unemployment rate was 9 percent,
5 the local rate 12 percent. In 1949 the
6 national unemployment rate was 7 percent,
7 the local rate 18 percent. In 1940 the
8 national unemployment rate was 14.6 percent,
9 the local rate was 32 percent.
10 During the Great Depression the
11 national unemployment rate was 24 percent,
12 the local unemployment rate was 48 percent.
13 The Times-Tribune also provided a graph, a
14 monthly chart, seasonally adjusted
15 unemployment rates from January 1970 to
16 December 2008. I have asked council on
17 numerous occasions to invite Mr. Austin
18 Burke and the Scranton Chamber of Commerce
19 to attend the Scranton City Council meeting
20 to address these serious economic and
21 work-related issues. Again, my request has
22 fallen on deaf ears. Marching orders again
23 got in the way. Mr. Burke states in
24 Mr. Haggerty's article, and I quote, "I am
25 hopeful that we won't be some multiple of
1 the national average."
2 My interpretation, and only my
3 interpretation, I really am not concerned.
4 I make a six figure salary every year and
5 have for over 28 years. We need more KOZ's
6 and tax exempt businesses and property in
8 Also, it is not my fault that we
9 have no work or high wages in the area. The
10 fault lies with the speakers at Scranton
11 City Council. They drive potential
12 employers away from the area. Way to go,
13 Legion of Doom.
14 Don't let the facts get in the way
15 of a good story. My hope is that more
16 factual and actual stories will be reported
17 by the two local newspapers, the
18 Times-Tribune and the Times Leader Scranton
19 Edition. Investigative reporting is what is
20 needed, not just writing quotes down and
21 reporting them as facts. For those
22 Scrantonians who have never lived anywhere
23 else except Scranton, Scranton is a good
24 city to raise your kids and live after
25 retirement. Not a good place to earn a
1 living and support yourself and your family
2 unless you are politically connected. The
3 local elected officials in chamber take care
4 of themselves and their own with little or
5 no regard for anyone else. Remember, the
6 Doherty will people and the Fanucci my
7 people, quotes from the mayor and council
8 woman, not on my words, just repeating them.
9 Finally, I would like to thank
10 Captain Paul Tarino and Captain Bob Seda and
11 all the Scranton firefighters and police
12 officers who are willing to risk their lives
13 on a daily basis to save someone else's
14 life. Captain Tarino and Captain Seda saved
15 a person in South Side in the 1200 block of
16 South Webster Avenue two blocks away from my
17 house. And also the United States military
18 and all honorably discharged veterans that
19 protect this country every day of the year.
20 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr.
21 Jackowitz. Andy Sbaraglia.
22 MR. SBARAGLIA: Andy Sbaraglia,
23 citizen of Scranton. Fellow Scrantonians, I
24 remember when Scranton Today I believe
25 wanted to use that room and they were
1 evicted from it. Now, ECTV has all of the
2 rights to that room. Is there a politics
3 involved? You better believe it.
4 Okay, let's get onto 5-B. I'm not
5 criticizing about them I'm just wondering
6 what is it for, is it going to be a
7 restaurant or what? It's the 225,000 loan?
8 MR. MCGOFF: Danielle and Company.
9 MS. FANUCCI: Yeah, it's not a
10 restaurant. She makes products like soaps
11 with different scents and products --
12 MR. SBARAGLIA: Is that what it's
14 MS. FANUCCI: -- like that. Yeah.
15 MR. SBARAGLIA: Okay. Let's get down
16 to 7-A, my favorite. Does anyone know what
17 the citizens of Scranton are going to
18 receive for the 11 1/2 million dollars we
19 are putting into the Connell building plus a
20 garage which is probably another eight or
21 nine? It comes out to be about 20 million.
22 What are we going to get for this 20
23 million, a viable building? Who is going to
24 make more on this deal, the people had own
25 the Connell building or the citizens of
1 Scranton? And better yet, how much did they
2 pay to get that building? I don't think it
3 was that much if I remember right. We got
4 ten times probably more than they pay for
5 the building into it, the public at large.
6 Jesus, something is wrong somewhere.
7 Really something is wrong. Every time you
8 pick up the paper people are losing their
9 homes, but yet we have millions of dollars
10 put into one building or five or six
11 buildings. We got -- if you add it all up
12 we got 30 plus another 20, about $50 million
13 we invested in a few buildings in Scranton.
14 You really think that is smart to really put
15 that much money into a few buildings? No.
16 Unless somebody is getting something out of
17 it there is certainly no big financial
19 Okay. You know what I think about
20 subordinate loans. I get tired of you
21 subordinates, subordinates, subordinates.
22 What good is giving a loan if you are going
23 to subordinate it? Really, really, really,
24 if you take -- you tell us that we are going
25 to have prime -- if anything goes wrong we
1 are going to get our money because we get
2 all of the equipment and building and this
3 and that and whatever, you subordinate it
4 and we get nothing. Surely the Hilton must
5 have thought something. When we subordinate
6 our loan for the Hilton, we took bed sheets,
7 fixtures on the wall and what do we get for
8 it? Nothing. And that deal stunk from the
9 very beginning. I know most of you weren't
10 sitting on council when that happened. I
11 told Gary that time when they said we are
12 going to close the building, I said let him
13 close it. I'm sure somebody would have
14 bought it, there is no question about it.
15 That man got a $33 million building for 13.
16 How do you like that for bargaining? I
17 guess the only place that's really better is
18 in Detroit. I guess they got good bargains
19 out there now.
20 But this is what I mean about the
21 city. You got to take care of the people
22 inside of the city, the people who are
23 paying that wage tax, 3.4 percent we are
24 paying. Of course, the city I know only
25 pays 2.4. But we are paying 3.4. Everyone
1 else around us is paying one and still what
2 are we doing to the people? You are really
3 sticking their heads into the mud. I'm
4 surprised at you really that you don't look
5 at the city in a different light. You don't
6 and I don't understand why.
7 Some people said this or that, but I
8 love the city, that's why I stayed in it. I
9 paid that 3.2 percent as a construction
10 worker and they are quite high, but I paid
11 it because I love the city and I believe you
12 should give something back to the city.
13 They gave me the opportunity to grow up here
14 and it was wonderful time to grow up in
15 Scranton at that time. You didn't have what
16 you have now. You weren't afraid to walk
17 the streets. The streets were even in
18 better shape, but there weren't that many
19 cars to go over them, but that's how it was
20 back then. I go way back. I was born in
21 the 30's, and like I say, it was a good
22 time, in fact, it was a real good time to be
23 born because the world was about going to
24 begin. Of course, the people that fought it
25 don't think so, but as a kid it was. Thank
2 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you,
3 Mr. Sbaraglia. Ozzie Quinn.
4 MR. QUINN: Ozzie Quinn, Taxpayers'
5 Association. The administration's lack of
6 spending on infrastructure maintenance, that
7 is, the potholes, sidewalks and the curbs
8 that are deteriorated along with no home
9 improvement and repair for homeowners are
10 seriously short of what is required to
11 maintain neighborhoods. Anyone can confirm
12 this by taking a drive or walk around some
13 of the neighborhoods. Yet, we all at the
14 end of the 2008, the taxpayers owe
15 $170 million principle only, and the mayor
16 has spent over $50 million in CDBG funds
17 since he took over using the buckshot
19 Since a speaker last week said that
20 all cities are financially suffering, let it
21 be clear that the administration's debt
22 occurred long before the recession. What
23 has happened to all of the money? We know
24 for one thing that it is a result of poor
25 fiscal and physical planning and has to be
1 stopped. The taxpayers cannot afford this
2 debt. What about the firefighters and the
3 police, how are they going to be paid?
4 Their mayor wants to eliminate fire stations
5 and yet build a new library in South Side
6 with taxpayers' money. Where are we going
7 to stop? Enough is enough. I just want to
8 point out also the fact that the mayor has
9 expended $2,062,302 on lawyers to fight the
10 unions at city hall. Thank you.
11 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. Quinn.
12 Stephanie Gawel.
13 MS. GAWEL: Good evening, Council.
14 It's been very long 17-years since PEL paid
15 by Harrisburg arrived here to recover this
16 city from distressed status, it appears that
17 after 17 long years in ain't working, and
18 they simply say the unions got to go. This
19 is the same time of thinking that was
20 present around the early 20th century when
21 greedy business owners and politicians
22 treated people like they shouldn't exist.
23 The unsafe working conditions, the low and
24 menial paid, long working hours, and if you
25 don't like if just quit attitude, that's
1 just the way it was. If you are a union
2 member you know these are the same people
3 back in those days had to fight to organize
4 unions. These workers and their families
5 were harassed, injured and in some cases
6 killed all for the right to form unions that
7 now provide safe working conditions, better
8 wages and paid overtime.
9 This administration would like
10 everyone to believe that the police and
11 firefighters' unions are the reasons we are
12 still distressed status. There are many
13 unions out there that have a right to call
14 in sick, work slowdowns and strike. Both
15 the fraternal order of police and the fire
16 unions gave up their rights to strike for
17 fair arbitration that was voted into law.
18 So it makes you wonder why this
19 administration continues to waste taxpayers'
21 We voted for the unions to have fair
22 arbitration. This administration is
23 arrogant, ignorant and incompetent when it
24 continues to give NCC business. We have a
25 tax office, all we need to do is hire one or
1 two more other employees that would do
2 exactly what NCC is doing except we would
3 get all of the money collected. The fact
4 that this administration doesn't care to
5 speak to it's citizens of Scranton, but to
6 the people of the Chamber of Commerce which
7 is basically businessmen and women from
8 outside of the area, whether it's Dunmore,
9 the Abingtons, etcetera.
10 This administration doesn't care
11 about the safety of the citizens because the
12 only thing the police cars -- in the police
13 cars are a First Aid kit. They used to have
14 oxygen, defibrillators, flares, etcetera.
15 We still don't have these and I know we have
16 talked about it and stuff, but truly this --
17 he just doesn't worry about our safety
18 issues. He has talked about closing the
19 more fire companies and stuff like that and
20 it's just not right. It's just not.
21 And, you know, Mrs. Gatelli, you
22 stated once that, well, I can sit and talk
23 to my union. Well, yeah, because you have
24 the power to strike. It puts a little more
25 pressure on them. First off, nothing
1 against, you know, but most parents don't
2 want to be home all day with the kids. You
3 know, there is a lot of them are going, no,
4 they are supposed to be in school, and these
5 gentleman and women who put their lives on
6 the lines don't have that option. They just
7 don't have it. It's not right.
8 And I'd like to just make one more
9 comment, I realize that we seem to have the
10 same speakers week after week, but these
11 people truly do look into their information
12 for the most part. You have one or two that
13 don't, and to pick on them is unfair. I
14 know I have been up here and I'm trying to
15 encourage other people to put fresh faces on
16 all the issues, but truly we need not to
17 pick on the ten that do take their time,
18 like Marie and Andy and Ozzie that, you
19 know, look up their information before they
20 come up and speak. Thank you. Have a nice
22 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mrs. Gawel.
23 Marie Schumacher.
24 MS. SCHUMACHER: Good evening,
25 Council. Marie Schumacher, resident and
1 member of the Taxpayers' Association.
2 First, I know I'm wasting my breath, but I
3 also am against 7-C. I don't think the
4 citizens and the taxpayers' equity should be
5 subordinated to the banks.
6 Second, I would like to ask Mrs.
7 Gatelli what the status is of the Single Tax
8 Office audit report. I thought by now we
9 would have that. We seem to have nothing
10 but excuses and delays.
11 MS. GATELLI: Would you like me to
12 answer now or in motions?
13 MS. SCHUMACHER: Yes, please, because
14 last week I asked and you didn't do it in
15 motions so I'll give some of my time.
16 MS. GATELLI: Yes, I made a report
17 about the tax report in motions.
18 MS. SCHUMACHER: Not what I asked.
19 MS. GATELLI: Well, I'm sorry, I
20 apologize if I didn't answer you completely.
21 I spoke to Mr. McGovern last night and he
22 told me that they there setting up the dates
23 for the meeting. The audit is done, the
24 Treasury Department has looked over the
25 audit and now they are just waiting to set
1 the meeting.
2 MS. SCHUMACHER: Thank you. Now,
3 I'll continue with the letter I wrote to
4 Mr. Cornelius, the head of the State
5 Department of Community and Economic
6 Development with the concerns I have
7 regarding the variances from the Recovery
8 Plan. "The 27th payroll issue is
9 highlighted, noting resolution should be
10 reviewed with the auditors. A scant two
11 years later it became apparent the issue was
12 not properly addressed resulting in wasted
13 arbitration and legal fees.
14 Next, city pension funding was
15 premised to trend upward, but remained well
16 below the 2000 actual. 2005 was 86 percent
17 of 2000 which I don't consider well below.
18 Another premise was Nay Aug Park
19 expenditure is assumed to bear a one-time
20 cost which is not carried forward from 2005
21 through -- excuse me, from 2003 through
22 2007. Nay Aug Park has continued to be a
23 money pit which is bottomless.
24 PEL was concerned about an action
25 that would have eliminated the cash payments
1 to the city for the DPW land. This cash
2 payment of $600,000 has yet to be received
3 by the city.
4 In 1998, a formal certification was
5 issued which called on the city to develop a
6 balanced budget. Identify and adopt a
7 course of action to correct it's structural
8 financial imbalances. Ten years later there
9 has not been a budget balanced without
10 incurring debt or utilizing a one-time
11 revenue item.
12 The current administration incurred
13 a $5.5 million termination fee when they
14 chose not to renew their contract with
15 American Anglican Environmental
17 DCED's fourth amendatory order
18 directed the mayor and city council to
19 achieve consensus on the principal of a
20 revised Recovery Plan for 2001 and beyond.
21 The adopted Recovery Plan ran through 2005
22 without a similar order for 2006 and beyond
23 and here we are in 2009.
24 The figures outlined in Chapter 1-B
25 of the Recovery Plan serve as the keystone
1 leading to a reasonable realistic and
2 achievable course of action to address the
3 continuing long-term issues. How close did
4 the city come to meeting these projections?
5 Chapter 1-B assumed that TAN-B would
6 remain at about $3,200,000 but has been more
7 in the neighborhood of $10 million annually.
8 The 27th payroll issue is
10 No, no, I'm sorry. I did that one.
11 "The city pension --" I have two of the
12 wrong pages. I'm sorry. I will have to
13 conclude it next week. I copied -- I
14 brought two page two's and no page three,
15 I'm sorry, and my glasses are falling apart.
16 MS. FANUCCI: Did you receive an
17 answer from them as of yet?
18 MS. SCHUMACHER: I received an
19 unanswered letter which I will -- I received
20 a letter which said nothing but it's all
21 like firemen and policeman's fault
22 addressing none of the specific items where
23 council and the mayor have strayed from the
24 Recovery Plan, and I will write to
25 Mr. Cornelius as soon as I get my taxes
2 And one while we on -- we talked
3 about Nay Aug and the money that has been
4 wasted there is just pitiful. Recently we
5 had the problems with the fish. That
6 pavilion, there was no reason for that
7 pavilion to collapse except for neglected
8 maintenance which seems to be the keystone
9 at Nay Aug and every place. Put the money
10 into doing something, make a capital expense
11 and then forget about it and leave it. That
12 pavilion should have been taken down or
14 The wildlife center is another
15 issue. Now, the mayor took 175 million --
16 or, excuse me, I wish $175,000 from the
17 state to -- I'll finish this and then leave,
18 for the Wildlife Center when they moved in,
19 and that whole $175,000 went guess where, to
20 architects to come up with a design for a
21 new zoo, and now what do we want to build, a
22 library in South Scranton. Thank you.
23 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Ms.
24 Schumacher. Les Spindler.
25 MR. SPINDLER: Good evening, Council.
1 Les Spindler, city resident and taxpayer and
2 homeowner. The traffic light that council
3 is voting on Linden Street for the office
4 park, I think council should think twice
5 about passing that. I think it's on public
6 safety issue.
7 MR. COURTRIGHT: Les, can I interrupt
8 one second? We are going to table that
9 tonight because there is some issues.
10 MS. GATELLI: And I voted "no" last
11 week, Mr. Spindler. I agree with you.
12 MR. SPINDLER: In the winter going up
13 the hill in people are stuck, they are going
14 to get stuck.
15 MR. COURTRIGHT: We discussed that.
16 MR. SPINDLER: Coming down around the
17 corner where you got bridges, I think it's a
18 safety issue.
19 MR. COURTRIGHT: That's exactly what
20 we discussed in caucus so we are going to
21 table it.
22 MR. SPINDLER: Thank you. Last
23 week, Mrs. Gatelli, you asked about why some
24 speakers just pick on Mrs. Fanucci and
25 Mr. Minora about the parking tickets, well,
1 as a matter of fact, myself and
2 Mr. Jackowitz were the only two had spoken,
3 neither one of us mentioned Mr. Minora, so
4 thank you for bringing that to light.
5 MR. GATELLI: I believe Mr. Minora
6 was questioned about his parking tickets.
7 MR. SPINDLER: Look at the -- go back
8 and look at the tapes. I know for a fact I
9 didn't and Mr. Jackowitz didn't.
10 MS. GATELLI: Well, someone did,
11 because he answered the question.
12 MR. SPINDLER: The reason I asked
13 Mrs. Fanucci because she is an elected
14 official and she should be held to a higher
16 MS. GATELLI: I agree, but I think
17 all elected officials should be looked at.
18 MR. SPINDLER: Mrs. Fanucci, if this
19 hadn't been brought to light would you have
20 paid those parking tickets?
21 MS. FANUCCI: The two I had? The
22 two I had?
23 MR. SPINDLER: Would you have?
24 MS. FANUCCI: Yes. I pay my parking
25 tickets all the time.
1 MR. SPINDLER: I highly doubt. Why
2 did it take you eight years to do it?
3 MS. FANUCCI: Les, why don't you go
4 down and find out how many parking tickets I
5 have paid in the past and then come back
7 MR. SPINDLER: Yeah, well, I don't --
8 here is 15 you didn't pay. Here is 15 you
9 didn't pay.
10 MS. FANUCCI: That's not true.
11 MR. SPINDLER: Right here, black and
12 white. Right here.
13 MS. FANUCCI: Yeah, I'd love to see
14 that. Bring that to one to me, too, Les.
15 MR. SPINDLER: You know where they
16 can be found. Moving on. Last week,
17 Mrs. Gatelli, you also said in the past
18 there was a three to two majority and you
19 said they couldn't get things done.
20 MS. GATELLI: No, I said they didn't
21 stop the mayor from doing anything.
22 MR. SPINDLER: Well, you know why
23 they couldn't stop the mayor --
24 MS. GATELLI: Why?
25 MR. SPINDLER: -- Mrs. Gatelli,
1 because every time they voted to do
2 something with the 3/2 majority the mayor
3 would veto it and they didn't have a four to
4 one majority to override it either.
5 MS. GATELLI: Well, Mrs. Spindler,
6 are you aware that the president puts things
7 on the agenda? So the president could have
8 kept everything off that agenda.
9 MR. SPINDLER: But the mayor --
10 MS. GATELLI: And stopped the mayor
11 right in his tracks. Nothing would have
12 been put on that agenda.
13 MR. SPINDLER: Council made motions
14 to do things. I know, I was here.
15 MS. GATELLI: I disagree with you.
16 MR. SPINDLER: You weren't here. I
17 was here.
18 MS. GATELLI: Well, it's up to the
19 president to put things on the agenda.
20 MR. SPINDLER: Council wanted to do
21 this for the taxpayers, the mayor vetoed it
22 and they didn't -- the mayor had his two
23 puppets there to go along with him so they
24 couldn't override the veto.
25 MS. GATELLI: I'll talk more about
1 that in motions because you are wrong,
2 Mr. Spindler.
3 MR. SPINDLER: No, I'm not.
4 MS. GATELLI: Yes, you are.
5 MR. SPINDLER: And I think there is a
6 lot of witnesses here. Okay, CDTV or ECTV,
7 elect Chris TV, got booted out of their
8 building now, I'd like to know what's going
9 to happen to all of the money that was put
10 into there, all of the thousands and
11 thousands of dollars and are they going to
12 come back and ask for more money for the new
13 building they will have to move into?
14 Next thing, I hear Molly Branigan's
15 is closing after the St. Patrick's Day
16 parade, I don't know when after, but they
17 are closing after the parade, and I hear the
18 Banshee is for sale, so we can add those
19 couple of buildings to the list of
20 unoccupied buildings.
21 Mr. Courtright, last week you were
22 talking about parking tickets that you got
23 and you paid them and you said you'd love to
24 know how you can get them fixed, well, just
25 ask Mrs. Fanucci, she got 15 of them fixed.
1 MS. GATELLI: That's unfair.
2 MR. MCGOFF: Please, that's wrong.
3 MR. SPINDLER: No, it isn't. It's a
5 MR. MCGOFF: That's out of order.
6 MR. SPINDLER: It's a fact.
7 MR. MCGOFF: It's out of order.
8 MR. SPINDLER: There's 15 she got
10 MR. MCGOFF: Mr. Spindler, it's out
11 of order.
12 MR. SPINDLER: No, it's freedom of
14 MR. MCGOFF: No, it's not.
15 MS. FANUCCI: It's wrong freedom of
16 speech, but it's freedom of speech.
17 MR. MCGOFF: You made an accusation
18 of a criminal activity. That is it not
19 freedom of speech.
20 MS. FANUCCI: The big scandal,
21 parking tickets, Les. That's what it was
22 all about.
23 MR. SPINDLER: A 16-year-old boy was
24 arrested Saturday, he attempted to rape a
25 University of Scranton student then he was
1 caught following other students into her
2 dorm, and they think that -- the police
3 think it's a the same person that attacked
4 two people in West Scranton last week. That
5 can't be true because Mayor Doherty says we
6 don't have crime in this city.
7 Lastly, I have spoken about and
8 other people have spoken about what's going
9 on with North Scranton Junior High School.
10 I think it would be a good idea for council
11 to ask Mr. Langan to come in for a caucus so
12 he could be asked a lot of questions the
13 citizens have. Would that be a possibility?
14 Mr. McGoff?
15 MR. MCGOFF: I'm sure the invitation
16 could be extended.
17 MR. SPINDLER: Well, could you look
18 into that, please?
19 MR. MCGOFF: Yes.
20 MR. SPINDLER: Okay. Thank you.
21 MS. SUETTA: Why is everybody
22 smiling. Good evening, Jean Suetta. Judy,
23 I'm glad you come out of the closet.
24 MS. GATELLI: I did?
25 MS. SUETTA: Didn't you just come out
1 of that one before? All right. Question
2 number one --
3 MS. GATELLI: Don't tell my husband
4 that, Jeannie.
5 MS. SUETTA: I don't know. You just
6 told me you were in the closet before. Did
7 we get recycling bins up at Nay Aug?
8 MS. FANUCCI: No, I don't think yet
9 we did. I don't think --
10 MS. SUETTA: What's the holdup. I
11 mean, they have a lot of them down the DPW,
12 it won't hurt to put them by all the
13 containers. Bill, what about Jerry Langan?
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: What about him?
15 MS. SUETTA: I asked you last week
16 to find out why they blocked that monument
17 that nobody goes to.
18 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yeah, I haven't
19 found out yet, Jean.
20 MS. SUETTA: Why?
21 MR. COURTRIGHT: I did not get a
23 MS. SUETTA: I gave you a whole
24 week. Judy, he got a week, you got two.
25 How many cars run through Nay Aug.
1 MS. GATELLI: 200,000 I was told.
2 MS. SUETTA: 200,000. That's almost
3 a quarter of a million. If everybody gave a
4 donation --
5 MS. GATELLI: Yeah, but everybody
6 doesn't give a donation unfortunately.
7 MS. SUETTA: There is few and far
8 apart. Where did all of the money go?
9 MR. MCGOFF: Goes to the
11 MS. GATELLI: It goes to the Nay Aug
12 Conservancy the money.
13 MS. SUETTA: But where did it go?
14 They only --
15 MS. GATELLI: $47,000 they paid.
16 MS. SUETTA: Right, 200,000 care went
17 through, a lot of people go through. I gave
18 ten, my friend gave ten.
19 MS. FANUCCI: Some people don't give
21 MS. GATELLI: Yes. It's not
23 MS. SUETTA: So the other ones
24 compensate what they didn't give. 200,000
25 cars, come on. That's a lot of cars.
1 MS. GATELLI: Yes, it is.
2 MS. SUETTA: There is a lot of money
3 and somebody was dipping into the till.
4 MS. GATELLI: Oh, I don't think so.
5 MR. COURTRIGHT: Don't say that.
6 MS. SUETTA: Oh, yeah. And, yes, I
7 will say it. And, Sherry, if you need money
8 for your parking tickets I'll give it to
9 you. I'll be a good person.
10 MS. FANUCCI: I'll be okay. They are
11 paid, Jean.
12 MS. SUETTA: I'm only busting you.
13 MS. FANUCCI: I know.
14 MS. SUETTA: When are we getting the
15 Christmas decorations out of the front.
16 Stupid question. I, mean it's March 10.
17 MS. FANUCCI: I thought that myself.
18 MS. GATELLI: They are probably in
19 for St. Patrick's Day. They must be green.
20 MS. SUETTA: No, there is white
21 sticks out there, too. So we only collected
23 MS. FANUCCI: Yeah.
24 MS. SUETTA: There is a rotten egg.
25 MS. FANUCCI: It was tough Christmas
1 for everybody.
2 MS. SUETTA: I want to know about the
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: I will find out for
5 you. You call me enough, you should have
6 asked me again.
7 MS. SUETTA: Well, I did, but now you
8 didn't return my call.
9 MR. COURTRIGHT: I think you dialed
10 the wrong number.
11 MS. SUETTA: No, no, no. I know your
12 phone number. Amil, I got rollover minutes.
13 All right. That's it. Sherry, nothing
14 doing over the Radison?
15 MS. FANUCCI: No. No.
16 MS. SUETTA: I hear he died, too.
17 MS. FANUCCI: I don't know. I will
18 check on that.
19 MS. SUETTA: And I want to know, you
20 work for the governor, do me a favor, tell
21 him thank you.
22 MS. FANUCCI: For?
23 MS. SUETTA: Raising the price of
24 cigarettes because after today I quit.
25 MS. FANUCCI: You did?
1 MS. SUETTA: I'm going to. I bought
2 my last pack of cigarettes.
3 MS. FANUCCI: Good for you. I'm very
4 proud of you. Congratulations.
5 MS. SUETTA: I won't have no
7 MS. FANUCCI: There is a rough
8 spot -- there a rough spot there for awhile,
9 but good luck.
10 MS. SUETTA: But he raised the price
11 and that's it. I'm done.
12 MS. FANUCCI: Good luck.
13 MR. MCGOFF: Thanks, Jean. Doug
15 MR. MILLER: Good evening, Council.
16 Doug Miller, Scranton. It's truly nice to
17 see the students here this evening to take
18 part in our meeting. I think it just goes
19 back to show us what Junior Council did here
20 for students and it's sparked an interest
21 and I think you are going to see it continue
22 because students have become interested and
23 they want to take part in our government, so
24 it's great to see you here. We take a look
25 at the agenda tonight 7-A and 7-B, and again
1 we have the Connell building. We want to go
2 and squander some more grant money away, and
3 I have raised the issue several weeks ago
4 that I was hopeful council would vote
5 against this legislation, but it seems
6 tonight we know it's going to pass.
7 And I believe the developer of this
8 property has other properties in the area
9 that are worth $1 million and could
10 certainly cover the cost of this project. I
11 think it's truly time that this council
12 becomes more responsibile with our grant
13 money and put it to better use because I
14 truly don't see what the taxpayers are
15 getting out of this project.
16 Regarding ECTV we saw that today
17 they lost their zoning agreement. They were
18 housed in the church basement in the Hill
19 Section, and this is a station which council
20 approved $90,000 for and now they are a
21 station that's look for a home and has yet
22 to live up to it's promises that were made
23 in it's proposal. I guess now we can find a
24 piece of property that we own and just give
25 it to them and let them build a home there
1 because we seem to be good at giving things
2 away. I do have to give you credit for
4 Several weeks ago I raised the issue
5 of council finding grants to save some of
6 these churches in the city, and I believe
7 somebody on council -- I had left, but
8 somebody responded by saying you don't have
9 a say in that matter. Well, that's where I
10 disagree because as elected officials and
11 people that do have power you do have the
12 authority to send a letter to Martino
13 objecting to his actions.
14 And the same is with the issue of
15 the School of the Deaf I had. There was a
16 comment made well you have to take it up
17 with higher powers, Senator Mellow, Murphy,
18 and so on, but there is no reason that
19 council can't send a letter to the governor
20 objecting to the fact that he wants to pull
21 funding to the school.
22 MS. GATELLI: We did, Douglas.
23 MR. MILLER: Okay.
24 MS. GATELLI: We did do that. We
25 made a motion.
1 MR. MILLER: Okay, I missed that.
2 THE COURT: And for the medical
4 MR. MILLER: Good. I apologize. I
5 missed that.
6 MS. GATELLI: And I believe that all
7 of us did attend the State School for the
8 Deaf rally, all of council members were
10 MR. MILLER: Yeah, I didn't mean to
11 through any shots at you.
12 MS. GATELLI: No, I just wanted to
14 MR. MILLER: Okay. That's good. I'm
15 glad to see that. You know, in times like
16 these council does have the power just
17 shows, you know, all the times you got to
18 put some effort and I'm pleased to see that
19 took place. Thank you.
20 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. Miller.
21 I cannot read the next name. Mr. Morgan?
22 You are going to have to do some penmanship
23 classes or something.
24 MS. GATELLI: Dr. Morgan. You could
25 be a doctor, Lee.
1 MR. MORGAN: Yeah, I don't think I
2 would like to be a doctor though. You know,
3 I'd like to agree with a couple of the
4 speakers who came up prior to myself. Andy
5 Sbaraglia, I agree with every statement he
6 made from this podium. Ozzie Quinn the same
7 thing, and the same with Marie. And to be
8 honest with you, there is -- there is a lot
9 of people who have come up here and if the
10 people who watch this may think that these
11 things are repetitive, and you know
12 something, they most certainly are because
13 none these problems have within solved, and
14 we are still spending out of control in
16 I also agree that we should table
17 7-A to 7-C, but I think that what we really
18 need to take a look at is the file of
19 council that I have -- well, Neil was nice
20 enough to pull it out and I had a chance to
21 read it once again, File of Council 82-2007
22 with all of the fees that we are putting on
23 people that are delinquent. When you listen
24 to Bill Jackowitz who came up here and spoke
25 about unemployment, you know, that's the
1 greatest thing about belonging to the tax
2 group is that we are all a committed group
3 of people who have a very great love for
4 this city and the county, and it may sound
5 like a crazy thing for somebody to say, but
6 we are invested here, and I'd just like to
7 speak for myself and say that we have no
8 intentions of going away and we intend to
9 learn as much as he we can and try to get
10 this council and any government bodies that
11 we can interact with to make changes for the
12 benefits of the people which seems to be
13 particularly very hard for this city to do,
14 but I would like to see the city revisit
15 this issue, and I would like to see the city
16 do something with this legislation
17 considering the kind of situation this
18 country find itself in now with the economic
19 catastrophe that we are facing, I mean with
20 the banks and the stock market and
21 everything else that's going on.
22 But the one thing that I have really
23 noticed is that, and other speakers have
24 spoken about this from the podium, and it's
25 the amount of blight in this city. It's not
1 just in South Side, it's through an awful
2 large section of this city, and it's not
3 that people don't want it repair their
4 properties, but they have been so overtaxed
5 for so long that they have nothing left.
6 I drive through the 17th corridor
7 through New York almost every day and the
8 people in New York are debating why their
9 property taxes are so high and they can't
10 maintain their property or even go out for a
11 night of entertainment because all their
12 disposal income is being eaten by taxation,
13 and I just like to say that we see an awful
14 lot of grants for special interest come
15 through council, and there is something
16 really wrong with that.
17 And now we talk about a library and
18 going to pump $16 million allegedly over
19 into South Side for this library, and my
20 question is don't you think if we had a
21 shovel ready project it would something to
22 with infrastructures? I mean, start small,
23 curbs, sidewalks, something. Generally a
24 regenerative program to make some small
25 loans to people to repair their properties?
1 I mean, that would benefit the community. I
2 mean, there is no doubt that quite possibly
3 the library is overutilized, but at this
4 time with the economic instability we find
5 in this city for a multitude of reasons
6 don't you think it's time to try to move
7 some of this grant money into the
9 I mean, we need neighborhood groups
10 to become strong again and try to help the
11 residents of their neighborhoods. We have a
12 lot of problems, I just hope that maybe we
13 could do something. Thank you.
14 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. Morgan.
15 David Dobson.
16 MR. DOBSON: Good evening, Council.
17 Dave Dobson, resident of Scranton,
18 Taxpayers' Association associate. I just
19 came up, a few things tonight. One thing I
20 would like to say, I had an idea a couple of
21 weeks ago on this Recovery Plan that nobody
22 seemed to vote for but it just keeps hanging
23 and around or whatever, it's time to maybe
24 mend the fences and put this up for a
25 reconsideration by the public, and from the
1 mayor's point of view that would get it off
2 of his back. He wouldn't have to stick to a
3 plan that nobody seems to like, so it might
4 be a little better in his cabinet in the
5 fares place.
6 On the development, we have five
7 taverns now on the block between Molly
8 Branigan's and the Trax tavern. We have
9 Rocky's, we are going to have Kildaire's,
10 how much drinking can we do?
11 MS. FANUCCI: That's the wrong
12 weekend to ask that question.
13 MR. DOBSON: Yeah. I'm not allowed
14 to have any more, so --
15 MS. FANUCCI: I know.
16 MR. DOBSON: -- that sucks. And I
17 read something in the paper today with
18 Matthew Avenue up on the Hill Section up in
19 that neighborhood that our power company is
20 planning on spraying from herbicides, and I
21 was wondering if they had any plans on
22 coming through the section at Nay Aug Park
23 where they just happen to locate their lines
24 years ago because it was unused, but now
25 that section of the park was open and we are
1 blessed with the wonderful power line
2 through it, and then on top of it would they
3 like to come in and poison all the trees
4 that we have left, so I'd really appreciate
5 if I hear something about that and get in
6 touch with the mayor and whoever is
7 involved. I think the people up on Matthew
8 Avenue are raising some issues with it and
9 they may force them to bring in tree
10 surgeons instead of spraying herbicide
11 around, and if they do it up at Nay Aug
12 Park, I mean, shame on them.
13 Also, on that particular section it
14 would be nice some day if they took their
15 power lines and located them across the
16 road. It could done. There is no Erie
17 railroad track on the other side and it's
18 mostly brownfield and they could run the
19 lines up over the hill before Nay Aug Park
20 and maybe we have something that we could
21 appreciate instead of constantly
22 criticizing, but whatever was done to it the
23 money was spent and we are certainly not --
24 it certainly shouldn't be degraded by a
25 power company coming through and doing
1 things to keep away. Thank you and have a
2 good night.
3 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. Dobson.
4 Liz Hubbard.
5 MS. HUBBARD: Good evening, Council,
6 Liz Hubbard, Scranton resident and taxpayer.
7 Okay, a couple of things. I understand
8 according to the city website that the city
9 inspector for lower Greenridge, Park Place
10 and Pine Brook, is being moved to South Side
11 to replace Todd Cortez who got another job.
12 Judy, I understand your concern for your
13 neighborhood, but you already have an
15 MS. GATELLI: That's not true. What
16 you are saying isn't true.
17 MS. HUBBARD: What's not true?
18 MS. GATELLI: That they are not being
19 moved. Carol Gillette is our inspector in
20 South Scranton.
21 MS. HUBBARD: And you only have one
22 over there?
23 MS. GATELLI: So far as I know.
24 MS. HUBBARD: Well, the way the
25 website reads you are going to have two.
1 MS. GATELLI: Who is the other one?
2 MS. HUBBARD: I thought it was Patty
3 Fowler or Patty Jones.
4 MS. GATELLI: She is here, are you
5 coming to South Scranton?
6 MS. FOWLER: That's news no me.
7 MS. GATELLI: Yeah, see.
8 MS. HUBBARD: Oh, well, then, I'm
10 MS. FOWLER: That's how the website
12 MS. GATELLI: Pardon?
13 MS. FOWLER: That is how the website
15 MS. HUBBARD: Well, okay, fine then.
16 MS. GATELLI: I wish she were coming.
17 She is a great inspector just by the way,
18 she does a wonderful job.
19 MS. HUBBARD: Well, if she goes over
20 there we don't have an inspector at all in
21 our neighborhood.
22 MS. GATELLI: Well, right now there
23 was only one on each side of the river, so
24 you had an inspector. You must have had
25 Donny McKeon or Jack Liptai, one of those
1 two, and Todd did this whole side of the
2 river before two new inspectors were put on.
3 MS. HUBBARD: Okay.
4 MS. GATELLI: There was only one for
5 each side of the river.
6 MS. HUBBARD: We need way more.
7 MS. GATELLI: Yes, I agree with you.
8 We need ten more inspectors.
9 MS. HUBBARD: Yeah, we do. Now, I'm
10 onto skunks and other critters. Judy, you
11 stated --
12 MS. GATELLI: Are they out yet?
13 MS. HUBBARD: Oh, yeah. You stated
14 at a previous meeting that money was being
15 budgeted for skunk removal; is that correct?
16 MS. GATELLI: Yes. That was my hope
17 that the part-time animal office --
18 MS. HUBBARD: A part-time animal
19 control officer was hired in addition to a
20 full-time animal control, do you know if
21 either one or both of them are authorized or
22 sanctioned by the state to trap wild
24 MS. GATELLI: I will find out.
25 MS. HUBBARD: Because a friend of
1 mine called about skunks under her front
2 porch and they told her that they only do
3 dogs and cats, and that she should call the
4 game commission and the game commission gave
5 her the same name.
6 MS. GATELLI: That same guy?
7 MS. HUBBARD: That they gave me when
8 I had the skunk problem. So, I mean, when
9 are we going to contract this out to get rid
10 of these skunks? They are disgusting.
11 MS. GATELLI: My intent was for that
12 to be -- to remove the skunks.
13 MS. HUBBARD: Well, apparently then
14 it's not.
15 MS. GATELLI: Well, I will try to
16 straighten that out.
17 MS. HUBBARD: I'd appreciate it.
18 MS. GATELLI: Thank you for bringing
19 it to my attention.
20 MS. HUBBARD: We have all of this
21 money for all these grants and loans and
22 everything else that we should hire a couple
23 of these state guys, whoever they are
24 certified by the state, to clean this city
25 out. And another thing, I saw something on
1 television a few weeks ago about a town, I
2 believe it was in Maryland, that had a
3 really big skunk problem. They also had lot
4 of feral cats, and the people thinking they
5 were doing a good thing were putting out cat
6 food for all of these stray cats. Well, the
7 cat food was drawing the skunks, so I'd like
8 to say to the people out there watching this
9 please don't feed cats outside. I know
10 garbage is a problem, too, but they seem to
11 like cat food, and it's like you are putting
12 lunch out for them. So, I mean,
13 it's terrible.
14 You know, we shouldn't have to live
15 like prisoners in our homes, so let's get on
16 that do something about it.
17 MS. GATELLI: I will ask -- -
18 MS. HUBBARD: It's an election year
19 so we might get some -- something done.
20 MS. GATELLI: Well, that was the
21 intent was so that they would address the
22 skunk issue.
23 MS. HUBBARD: What?
24 MS. GATELLI: The extra inspector.
25 MS. HUBBARD: Oh, right. Then they
1 should have known whoever hired --
2 MS. GATELLI: Absolutely.
3 MS. HUBBARD: Because it's the animal
4 control people themselves that are saying we
5 can't do that, so then the game commission
6 tell you to call a private person.
7 MS. GATELLI: All right. Thanks for
8 letting me know this, Mrs. Hubbard.
9 MS. HUBBARD: Sorry I was confused on
10 the inspector.
11 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mrs. Hubbard.
12 The last name on the list is another one
13 that I'm not sure is a Sayesha --
14 MS. GATELLI: Taisha.
15 MR. MCGOFF: Taisha. I'm sorry.
16 MS. PHARR: Hello. This is from my
17 heart what I am speaking here, but what I
18 wanted to bring up here was more youth
19 programs in Scranton. I know there are the
20 Progressive Center and the Bellevue Center
21 that's down here, but not a lot of teenagers
22 go there because they are not really active
23 in the in zone, and I feel like if they were
24 more youth programs like and where hands on
25 and more things in the community more
1 teenagers will participate. Now, teenagers
2 -- I know they only have school activities
3 such as sports and like clubs and anything
4 like that, but not every teenager has a job
5 and is not really interested in sports and I
6 know they have drug and alcohol programs,
7 and not every teenager is on drugs and
8 alcohol, but for them to go to the youth
9 program and have this program, like, it
10 would be more hands on. It would be more
11 things to do and not a lot of their parents
13 So I said teenagers and not young
14 adults because they are not a lot of adults
15 out here. To me, a young adult is a
16 responsible young person and a lot of
17 teenagers out here are not responsible
18 because their are things that happen in
19 front of the mall and anywhere else out here
20 because of what they do out here.
21 And I think it would be a good thing
22 if like they are in high school, it would be
23 a good thing if they would like to look at
24 college because whatever they are doing if
25 there was different areas and things like
1 that they would look into college and want
2 to do that for their future, so that was
3 just basically what I wanted to bring.
4 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you. What was
5 your last name, I'm sorry.
6 MS. PHARR: Pharr, P-H-A-R-R.
7 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you.
8 MS. PHARR: You're welcome.
9 MS. GATELLI: Taisha was a West
10 Scranton High School student, just for the
12 MR. MCGOFF: Any other speakers?
13 MS. ROYCE: Hi. Good evening.
14 Bernadette Royce, West Scranton. You can
15 love your city and still recognize the
16 problem it faces. Last week a woman berated
17 many of us for questioning the mayor. I do
18 not agree with many of the mayor's policies
19 and will speak out against them. I will try
20 to do it respectfully and I suggest that we
21 all do the same. However, I will not be
22 silent on his policies that put the life and
23 safety of my brothers at risk by closing
24 fire stations and cutting firefighters. As
25 a career firefighter/paramedic, I suffered a
1 permanent injury which ended by firefighting
2 career. Because of my injury, I am even
3 more passionate in my desire to prevent
4 needless injuries in my brothers. If this
5 passion ever gets the better of me at this
6 or any political forum, I will apologize in
7 advance, but I will come in here as often as
8 I can with the statistics and information
9 from fire science experts to substantiate
10 what I saw. Why? I am defending the health
11 and safety of my brothers. If this happens
12 to offend the sense and sensibilities of
13 some, so be it.
14 Currently, fire science experts with
15 the National Institute of Standards and
16 Technology, are conducting research
17 concerning optimal staffing for fire
18 apparatus. This includes possible five man
19 engines to reduce injuries and the effects
20 of this increased manning on heart rate
21 variability for firefighters. It's
22 difficult to know what this latest research
23 in fire science will have on the effects of
24 firefighters. It's also difficult to know
25 if the mayor and the public safety director
1 of Scranton has considered this in his plans
2 since to the best of my knowledge they have
3 never released these plans to the public.
4 Thank you very much.
5 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you.
6 MR. STUCKER: I was walking up
7 towards the hospital today up and down the
8 hill, there are two houses right across the
9 street from Moses Hospital, there is two
10 damaged. There is nobody living in them.
11 The front door is open and there is nobody
12 living in it, it's an abandoned house, two
13 abandons. One has stone in front of it,
14 that's one of them, and the one on the top
15 of the hill, a wood one is damaged.
16 MR. COURTRIGHT: Okay, Jim.
17 MS. STUCKER: And mental health is
18 going to give me another scooter. Mental
20 MR. COURTRIGHT: Okay.
21 MR. STUCKER: They're giving me the
22 money for it, $200.
23 MR. COURTRIGHT: Don't ride it on the
25 MR. STUCKER: No. All right. I got
1 a letter for you.
2 MR. COURTRIGHT: A letter for me?
3 You have to stand back here. Okay, Jim,
4 I'll call her.
5 MR. STUCKER: There's a lot of rats
6 and snakes in there she said, there are
8 MR. COURTRIGHT: Rats and snakes and
9 skunks. Al right. I'll call her.
10 MR. STUCKER: And what about that
11 house in Greenridge?
12 MR. COURTRIGHT: Which one, Jim, on
13 Greenridge Street?
14 MR. STUCKER: Yeah.
15 MR. COURTRIGHT: I don't know. They
16 boarded it up --
17 MR. STUCKER: I know they did.
18 MR. COURTRIGHT: It's boarded up now
19 and I have to see if it's on the list to be
20 torn down. It does need to be torn down.
21 MR. STUCKER: Yes.
22 MS. GATELLI: Yeah. Absolutely. I
23 was trying to get the address of that
24 building. There is address on it.
25 MR. COURTRIGHT: Is that the 1700
2 MS. HUBBARD: 600 block.
3 MR. STUCKER: Right across from
5 MR. HUBBARD: The corner of Dickson
6 and Greenridge.
7 MR. COURTRIGHT: The city is aware of
8 it. I believe that's who boarded up was the
9 city. I guess it's got to wait it's turn to
10 be torn down. We'll get it down, Jim.
11 MR. STUCKER: Okay. I live in a nice
12 building. I live in a high rise now. I
13 feel better.
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Very good.
15 MR. STUCKER: And I seen you the
16 other day with a white car.
17 MR. COURTRIGHT: The what?
18 MR. STUCKER: I seen you last week
19 with a white car.
20 MR. COURTRIGHT: Oh, yeah. I beeped
21 at you, didn't I?
22 MR. STUCKER: Yeah. I help Andy
23 Shirley once in awhile.
24 MR. COURTRIGHT: Who is --
25 MR. STUCKER: Andy.
1 MR. COURTRIGHT: Oh, good.
2 MR. STUCKER: I help him once in
3 awhile. I was back in the hospital again.
4 I pneumonia.
5 MR. COURTRIGHT: Oh, you okay now?
6 MR. STUCKER: Yeah.
7 MR. COURTRIGHT: Good.
8 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Jim.
9 MR. STUCKER: My buddy Pat told me
10 to tells you hello.
11 MR. COURTRIGHT: Drive slow?
12 MR. STUCKER: Pat, my buddy from
13 Parrot Avenue, told me to tell you all
15 MR. COURTRIGHT: Oh, hello. Okay.
16 MR. MCGOFF: Thanks, Jim.
17 MR. COURTRIGHT: Tell him we said
19 MR. UNGVARSKY: Good evening, city
20 council. I'm Tom Ungvarsky, and I'm a
21 member of the Scranton Lackawanna County
22 Taxpayers'. I have a great difficulty
23 trying to figure out who this council
24 represents. For over a year now I have
25 heard excuses as to why NCC can impose fines
1 and penalties on people who are having
2 difficulty paying their property tax. Two
3 weeks ago Kevin Mitchell appeared here and
4 asked for your support, nothing more, just
5 your support in limiting how much taxes can
6 be imposed on the people of Scranton and
7 Lackawanna County. It seems as though this
8 council seems to represent KOZ's, wealthy
9 developers such as the 500 block of
10 Lackawanna Avenue, the Connell building and
11 all of the other grants. I think it's time
12 city council started supporting the people
13 who elected them, the taxpayers of the city
14 of Scranton.
15 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr.
17 MR. MCCLOE: Good evening. May name
18 is Brett McCloe, homeowner, taxpayer. I'd
19 like what was said before with one of our
20 citizens last week came up and here and
21 complained and was angry about people who
22 come up here and complain, and I think it's
23 great that citizens voice their opinion
24 about how Scranton is made such progress,
25 but it's great also that people live a
1 life-style that they don't have to worry
2 about the long-term debt of the city, and I
3 guess she must have all of the numbers that
4 prove that our city is, in fact, moving
6 I'm not trying to be sarcastic or to
7 speak for anyone else, and I'm not ashamed
8 to say and very proud to say that I do have
9 an agenda. My livelihood depends on the
10 development of downtown Scranton. I'm a
11 waiter and my business is hospitality. I
12 depend on the people's ability to spend
13 hour-to-hour, table-to-table, tip-to-tip. I
14 see firsthand affects of this economy.
15 I have great hope that things will
16 turn around in the downtown area, but very
17 little faith in the process that it will
18 take to be truly progressive and
19 self-sustaining sustains given the realities
20 of today's economy. Like optimists say, the
21 glass is half full, pessimists say the glass
22 is half-empty, I say that depend on what's
23 in it, but I just wanted to pretty much keep
24 it short today.
25 I really didn't have much to say,
1 but I would like to ask any of you as to if
2 any of the economic stimulus package that
3 Scranton is getting, are there any
4 provisions to stop the exodus of businesses
5 downtown? What I'm talking about is the
6 businesses who rent, who pay rent or lease
7 to a building owner. I'm not talking about
8 giving anything to the business itself, but
9 to the building owner so he can lower the
10 rent or leases? I mean, because people are
11 coming in here and getting their KOZ's and
12 getting a sweet deal, but what about the
13 previous existing businesses that have to
14 get up and go because they cannot?
15 Businesses is slow, that's the way it is,
16 but I'm not going to have anybody shrug my
17 shoulders for me and give up, we have to try
18 another remedy. Is there anything in the
19 economic stimulus package that Scranton
20 receives that can lower rents for businesses
21 downtown so they don't have to leave?
22 Like I said, everybody is getting
23 KOZ except for the people who have been
24 here, and I'm not talking about giving
25 anybody a break, but guess what, we can't
1 show off our city if we put up another paper
2 over windows. We cannot show up off our
3 city. One of my jobs I have -- I was -- I
4 drove people back and forth from the airport
5 to Scranton, and I have met hundreds and
6 hundreds of people that way, newcomers to
7 Scranton, and a lot of times they say,
8 "Well, it looks like you guys are doing so
9 well downtown? It looks like you are doing
10 so well."
11 And the next thing they do, "Well,
12 why are the buildings empty?"
13 I said, "Well, we are under
14 construction," and I said, "It will another
15 six, seven, maybe ten years before you see
16 this place jump."
17 I do have faith. I mean, I do have
18 hope that this will come around, but unless
19 there is a remedy to stop the bleeding now
20 future investors are just going to come in
21 here and say, you know, it was a great
22 opportunity but it looks like nobody is
23 spending any money.
24 So, I was wondering if any at point
25 in time if anyone could give me an answer if
1 anything in the economic stimulus package
2 could help previous existing businesses not
3 KOZ's to -- well, building owners, so
4 building owners can lower the rents and
5 leases so some of these businesses can stay
6 in the town. All right. Thank you.
7 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. McCloe.
8 Anyone else?
9 MS. KRAKE: Good evening, Council.
10 My name is Nancy Krake. I'm going to read
11 from an article that appeared in the Times
12 in June of 2007, this is the tax penalty law
13 passed by council as written by Stacy Brown
14 stating that city council approved the
15 legislation that I have been asking you to
16 amend, just about every meeting that I am
18 It outlines what those things are:
19 $25 per lien; 160 for file opening and
20 review by a collector; 35 for preparation
21 and mailing; 175 each for preparing and
22 filing a lien; $800 for the preparation and
23 filing of sheriff's sale notices; $400 if
24 the collector or city uses a lawyer or
1 Quoting the mayor he says, "Tax
2 collection has been a problem in the city
3 and needs to be firmly addressed."
4 The only delinquent taxes this mayor
5 is interested in are the delinquent tax
6 houses, not your wage. In fact, he wasn't
7 the least bit concerned nor did he notice we
8 were shy at least $6 million in current wage
9 and I would venture to say at least another
10 six in delinquent, adamant though about our
11 house tax.
12 I also would like to read from an
13 actual bill: "Review and confirmation of
14 lien, $75," this is, by the way, from Edwin
15 N. Abrahamsen and Associates. That's the
16 law firm that these people are forced to
17 pay. He is also the owner of Northeast
18 Credit and Collection.
19 "Open file and issue legal demand
20 letter, $480. Prepare and filing of lien,
21 $525. $7.00 for certified mail. The base
22 tax was $309. Contrast that to the legal
23 fees of $1,087. This is fact.
24 I do not know what the
25 administration is telling council people,
1 but it is not true. I heard a taxpayer say
2 today they were very concerned and they were
3 trying to pay up to NCC and that they were
4 doing their best, they had medical problems
5 and so forth, only they were horrified to
6 find out that after they had paid the tax
7 they still owed several thousand in legal
8 fees. NCC had recommended that they pay the
9 tax first so they wouldn't lose their home.
10 No, that has not been done yet, but you have
11 passed a law that allows them to do that.
12 I have also got to let you know if
13 they are taking away penalties and interest
14 I don't know what they are taking away. I
15 know the treasurer can lower the penalty
16 that comes to the city, but all of the other
17 amounts that go to NCC is anyone taking
18 these one? Is it legal for them to take
19 them on? Because of your resolution can now
20 Abrahamsen come back and collect these
21 monies from the city if this city abates
22 them to taxpayers? Does anybody even
23 consider that before they voted for this? I
24 know Mrs. Evans and Mr. Courtright did not
25 and they have been trying to get it amended,
1 but the other three council persons the
2 longer we do this the more these questions
3 are going to arise and the more hurt you are
4 putting upon people. And these monies, no
5 matter how you look at it, are not coming
6 into the city. They are going to a law
7 firm. The same law firm whose name is on
8 here that owns Northeast Credit and
9 Collection. It simply is not right. It may
10 not be exactly legal, but that hasn't been
11 tested yet and I have a great faith in many
12 our citizens who have been taking lawsuit to
13 Commonwealth Court, maybe this will be the
14 next one.
15 I'd also like to say that I asked
16 several weeks in a row for what the break
17 down was for the -- Mrs. Fanucci is telling
18 me she has been asking, and I'm not -- I'm
19 glad you are doing that, I'd like to say
20 that everything else you have asked for you
21 have gotten immediately, so this leads me to
22 believe that the city does not want to tell
23 you why they put that number in the budget.
24 I'm sorry to say, I believe it's false or it
25 was based on false amounts, so I'm going to
1 do a Right-to-Know on that.
2 Also, I was curious a couple of
3 weeks in a row to find out what our current
4 contract is with NCC and when that was voted
6 MS. FANUCCI: It wasn't.
7 MS. KRAKE: So we have -- either I'm
8 assuming we don't have a contract with NCC
9 and it was not voted on.
10 MR. COURTRIGHT: Nancy, I think what
11 happens is if we -- if we didn't act on
12 their contract within a certain period of
13 time it automatically continues; am I
14 correct on that, Kay, or you don't know?
15 MS. KRAKE: So therefore --
16 MS. GARVEY: I believe that's what it
17 says in there.
18 MS. KRAKE: The mayor did not bring
19 that legislation to council.
20 MR. COURTRIGHT: Correct.
21 MS. KRAKE: So this firmly, once
22 again, Mayor Doherty these people give much
23 money to his campaign so he conveniently
24 forgot to give you that legislation to vote
25 on and, therefore, they just waltzed right
1 in. Thank you.
2 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mrs. Krake.
3 MR. ANCHERANI: Good evening. Nelson
4 Ancherani. First Amendment Rights. This
5 past Thursday at the Taxpayers' Association
6 meeting Ozzie Quinn read a letter from Fred
7 Ruddy of the infamous Pennsylvania Economy
8 League. In the letter, Ruddy stated the
9 police and fire take up 49 percent of the
10 city budget. If Ruddy can say that, we
11 would have to assume that he read the budget
12 to get the figures. Yeah, right. The only
13 thing PEL is good for is to keep this city
14 distressed so they can keep their paychecks
15 coming in, and now more importantly in these
16 tough economic times. Without the city
17 continuing in distressed status they are out
18 of jobs.
19 I checked the pie chart for
20 expenditures for 2009, in doing the math for
21 the police and fire 49 percent of the budget
22 like Ruddy says is $38,500,000. According
23 to the police and fire budgets on page 56
24 and 59 respectively, the percentage from the
25 police and fire is 35 percent or
1 $27,195,000, a difference of $11,310,000.
2 Just for your information, in case
3 some of you did not read the budget before
4 you voted on it, the pie chart is done
5 differently this year from previous years.
6 One of the differences it no longer says:
7 "Excluding tax anticipation notes."
8 The big difference is that the
9 expenditure pie chart is broken down into
10 departments, and includes all city
11 individual departments as slices, 12 slices
12 in all. No more trying to figure out how
13 much the total department cost by figuring
14 wages, pensions, compensation, etcetera.
15 The total of each department is on the
16 particular page for that department, but
17 then you all would know that because you all
18 read it.
19 One item not included in the pie
20 slices and is noticeably missing is
21 nondepartmental expenditures. I wondered
22 why they are not included in the pie chart,
23 especially since for this year non
24 departmental expenditures are 24 million,
25 close to 1/3 of the budget. I say they are
1 not included in the pie chart because if you
2 look at them they don't fall into any of the
3 individual departments. Examples of what
4 doesn't fall into any department are zoning
5 board, Everhart Museum, Genisis Wildlife
6 Refuge to name a few.
7 How about this one, can anyone tell
8 me about the operating -- TSF to debt
9 service sale leaseback of the DPW? In 2005,
10 the pay back was $150,000. In 2006, it was
11 430,000. In 2007, they were two leaseback
12 payments totaling 835,000. In 2008, there
13 were two leaseback payments totaling
14 6,358,000. This year the budgeted amount is
15 480,000 for a grand total of 8,253,000. The
16 cost of the DPW building was 3,500,000. We
17 must remember that Scranton Authority is now
18 leasing the DPW back to us to us the city.
19 This was in exchange for the Scranton Sewer
20 Authority bailing out the city with the $5.5
21 million loan because the city violated their
22 contract with the American Anglican. The
23 city lost the ensuing arbitration and had to
24 pay 5.5 million to American Anglican.
25 Think about this then, for the loan
1 of 5.5 million the 8,253,000 payback
2 includes 2,758,00 more than the 5.5 million.
3 2,758,000 is a nice interest payment. So
4 taxpayers, since 2005 we, the taxpayers, are
5 paying 2,758,000 plus, plus the taxpayers
6 are getting hit with a 56 million -- I'm
7 sorry, 56 percent rate hike that the sewer
8 authority imposed on us for the loan of the
9 5.5 million. The taxpayers are getting hit
10 twice, actually three times.
11 Losing the paid for DPW, the
12 56 percent rate hike, plus 2,758,000
13 interest all to the Scranton Sewer Authority
14 for the DPW. Thank you.
15 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr.
16 Ancherani. Come on, Chris.
17 MR. SLEDZENSKI: I'm coming. Up a
18 little, Bill?
19 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yeah, Chris, pick it
20 up. Go ahead.
21 MR. SLEDZENSKI: Billy, this year
22 there is a girl's softball team, my
23 brother-in-law is coaching the softball
24 league this year. Good luck to the softball
25 league this year. Good luck.
1 MR. COURTRIGHT: Okay, Chris.
2 MR. MCGOFF: Anyone else? Mrs.
4 MS. GATELLI: The first thing I
5 forgot to congratulate the students and the
6 teachers at Scranton High School who did a
7 wonderful job this past weekend on the show
8 that they presented called "Honk."
9 Kay, if we could send a letter about
10 that skunk inspector, you know, if indeed
11 the part-time one or the full-time one were
12 hired or certified to the mayor. Also,
13 to --
14 MR. MCGOFF: Mrs. Gatelli.
15 MS. GATELLI: I'm sorry. I thought
16 there wasn't anyone else.
17 MR. MCGOFF: I did, too.
18 MS. GATELLI: I apologize.
19 MR. MCGOFF: We did not know you
20 were going to speak and we had started
21 through the council motions.
22 MS. HUMPHRIES: I have --
23 MR. MCGOFF: Briefly?
24 MS. HUMPHRIES: Briefly. Okay, in
25 1994 in honor of Cardinal O'Connor and St.
1 Patrick's Church may he be canonized and
2 sainted, I went there on a mission and I
3 bring this forward just to pass around, and
4 this is the Hibernians. I received a new
5 coin, I'm in the Hibernians and the coin has
6 been held by Bishop Timlin. People don't
7 know everything, but the World Trade Center
8 is in here. On that day I went there for
9 the intercession for the protection of our
11 I have what they call posttraumatic
12 stress, people don't understand what it is,
13 but when a trauma happens whether it's
14 mental, physical, psychological, sexual
15 abuse or trauma or trauma through any form,
16 even the military just spoke on it, the
17 thing is you are treated, you get flashbacks
18 like if you are in the service and truly you
19 never want to forget what actually happened.
20 This man had lost his -- this military man
21 who is on the news he lost 69 in his
23 So, I am treated by a wonderful
24 doctor, Dr. Biancarelli for mental,
25 physical, psychological, sex abuse she deals
1 in, and I am survivor of multiple attacks
2 since I have been a young girl until now
3 which many people are now in high places and
4 they will be exposed.
5 MR. MCGOFF: Please. Phyllis.
7 MS. HUMPHRIES: What I want to say,
8 Abraham Lincoln --
9 MR. MCGOFF: It's inappropriate.
10 MS. HUMPHRIES: It's appropriate when
11 it's about crime, crime is the center of
12 evilness and immorality and or fire
13 department and our police department and our
14 judges they are put in place to protect us.
15 In a way they say separation of state and
16 church, but the truth is that the
17 commandments abide also with the police
18 department and help grab these people and
19 put them in their proper place, get them
20 where they need to go for their mental,
21 whatever they have to do, and try to forgive
22 them, reconciliate them and do the best that
23 they could.
24 President Lincoln had told about the
25 immoral's, I want to read this: Today the
1 United States of America is faced with the
2 most serious national crises in it's history
3 coming as Abraham Lincoln predicted for
4 within our country itself. Throughout our
5 land there is increased lack and disregard
6 and practice and a mockery for fundamental l
7 moral principals enshrined in our country's
8 founding documents.
9 The Declaration of Independence, the
10 Constitution and Bill of Rights while a
11 direct attack from communism, the crisis in
12 it is in the line with the errors of Russian
13 spread all over the world during the 70
14 years of pompous control. There is most
15 evidence in the spirit of secular humanism,
16 aggressive and actively promoted in our
17 country, schools and universities and
18 throughout the news media for many years,
19 and now almost parody the very air that we
21 As with Portugal, the solution to
22 our national crises can be found in the
23 message of Fatima. Central to the message
24 of Fatima is our Lord's desire to have
25 immaculate heart with the blessed mother on
1 them, alongside sacred heart according to
2 Sister Lucia.
3 On December 10, 1925, what is now
4 the Blue Arm Shrine of Ponte Verdi, Our Lady
5 of Child from Sister Lucia, she has asked
6 for prayer, the rosary, reading the bible,
7 eucharistic prayer. Without justice there
8 is no peace. We got to fight for peace and
9 we got to fight for love and we got to fight
10 for reconciliation, the end of abortion,
11 euthanasia, capital punishment.
12 Lincoln had children, they died, but
13 he supported life, our forefathers supported
14 life, and the constitution of the United
15 States has been desecrated, has been put for
16 political arenas, we got to take the right
17 constitution of the United States back.
18 When we put our hand on the Bible we are in
19 the realm of the Lord Jesus Christ in spirit
21 MR. MCGOFF: Phyllis --
22 MS. HUMPHRIES: And we're going to
23 support life, inside and outside of the
25 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you.
1 MS. HUMPHRIES: Pray for peace, pray
2 for reconciliation and pray to get the
3 proper people, and Hillary Clinton is Pro
4 Choice --
5 MR. MCGOFF: Phyllis.
6 MS. HUMPHRIES: I'm praying for her
7 for her reconciliation.
8 MR. MCGOFF: Phyllis.
9 MS. HUMPHRIES: I have no fear of no
10 one. I'm not of this world. I'm of heaven.
11 MR. MCGOFF: Phyllis. Thank you.
12 MS. HUMPHRIES: God Bless and Happy
13 St. Patrick's Day.
14 MR. MCGOFF: Okay.
15 MS. HUMPHRIES: Oh, and these pills
16 were given and there is orange things that
17 there is poison in --
18 MR. MCGOFF: Phyllis --
19 MS. HUMPHRIES: And they gave me the
20 wrong medicine that I could have died. I
21 ask the elderly to check for medicine when
22 it's coming in from the drug stores. I want
23 to protect the people and the elderly.
24 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you. Mrs.
25 Gatelli, I'm sorry.
1 MS. GATELLI: I'm going to be
2 sending a letter to the mayor to find out
3 about the animal control officer as was
4 stated here this evening whether they are
5 certified or not. It was my intent when I
6 put them in the budget for them to address
7 the skunk issue, and I'm sure that was
8 mentioned at the time.
9 Also, a letter to Mark Seitzinger
10 requesting demolition for the corner of
11 Greenridge and Dickson, 1111 Blair Avenue,
12 and 1107 Meade Avenue. These properties
13 have been condemned for over five years and
14 are certainly ready for demolition.
15 Also, I was speaking of some of the
16 things that Phyllis mentioned, I received a
17 e-mail from a constituent today who sent me
18 Senate Bill 404, it was introduced on
19 March 5th of 2009, and it is a bill for
20 procedures regarding the request for the
21 dispensation of lethal medication to
22 patients seeking to die in a dignified
23 manner, so Pennsylvania has before it's
24 Senate a bill for euthanasia, and I am going
25 to make a motion this evening that we send a
1 letter to them opposing that bill.
2 MS. HUMPHRIES: God bless you.
3 MR. MCGOFF: Please.
4 MS. HUBBARD: Everyone should have
5 the right to decide when they die.
6 MR. MCGOFF: Excuse me.
7 MS. GATELLI: Is anybody going to
8 second my motion? No?
9 MR. MCGOFF: I'll second it.
10 MR. COURTRIGHT: Mrs. Gatelli --
11 MR. MCGOFF: On the question.
12 MR. COURTRIGHT: Unfortunately I was
13 talking to Mr. McGoff and I don't know what
14 you said, could you repeat it?
15 MS. GATELLI: A bill was introduced
16 in the Senate of Pennsylvania to allow
17 patients to take medication to die, you
18 know, like Kevorkian did years ago. In the
19 State of Pennsylvania euthanasia would be
20 allowed and I am saying that I'd like to
21 send -- make a motion that we oppose that
22 Bill. You know, like sometimes we send
23 letters to support them and I'm saying that
24 I don't think that this should be a part of
25 what we are doing in the United States
1 people killing themselves when they have a
2 terminal illness. I just don't agree with
3 it as a nurse and as a human being I just
4 don't think it's right.
5 It's only legal in two states,
6 Oregon and another one, and I think once we
7 start doing these type of things we are on
8 the road to who is going to decide if we are
9 terminally ill. It's just very bad, and I'm
10 going to -- if you don't agree I'm going to
11 send my own letter as a council
12 vice-president that I oppose it and as a
13 citizen I oppose it and as a human being and
14 as a nurse I oppose euthanasia.
15 MR. MCGOFF: I agree with what you
16 have just said. I seconded it, I'm sorry,
17 your motion simply so that we could talk
18 about it. I think it might be more
19 appropriate that we send it as individuals
20 rather than as council. When we send a
21 letter as council I believe we are speaking
22 on behalf of the public, and I don't know
23 that in this case we have the I don't want
24 to say the authority or you know the right
25 to, but it may be more appropriate that -- I
1 would be more than happy to affix my
2 signature to, you know, a personal letter on
3 behalf me as an individual. I don't know
4 how anyone else feels about that?
5 MR. COURTRIGHT: I agree with you,
6 Mr. McGoff. I think if we were to do it, it
7 would be more appropriate to do it as
9 MS. FANUCCI: I agree.
10 MS. GATELLI: Well, I'm going to be
11 sending it as an individual and as
12 vice-president of Scranton City Council. It
13 is before the government, so obviously it's
14 a government issue, and that's how I feel.
15 So I will be sending it and under my name as
16 vice-president of city council and as a
17 private citizen.
18 MS. HUMPHRIES: And I will sign it.
19 MR. MCGOFF: Phyllis, please.
20 MS. GATELLI: I have been getting
21 some complaints about the people that live
22 in the Tripp Park section where the KOZ
23 homes are, and apparently Judge Minora
24 issued in December an order that the
25 retention pond be corrected by the
1 developer, Mr. Speicher, and in his order he
2 also stated that the City of Scranton is
3 enjoined from issuing any subdivision and/or
4 lot development permits of any nature for
5 the continued development of the Village at
6 Tripp Park, and the people that I have
7 spoken to are not going to be doing any land
8 movement such as driveways or things of that
9 nature that would effect runoff. They are
10 putting back porches on and one is putting
11 an above-ground swimming pool and things of
12 that nature.
13 I am not sure where the issue stands
14 because Mr. Speicher, from what I understand
15 has fled the area or fled the project, so I
16 don't know that he is going to be completing
17 what he is supposed to complete, and there
18 are people that want to do some improvements
19 to their property that will not effect water
20 runoff, so I am going to ask my council
21 members if we can send a letter to Judge
22 Minora asking him to revisit his order and
23 to see if he can't make some exceptions for
24 certain repairs to homes that will not
25 effect water runoff because I'm getting a
1 tremendous amount of phone calls that
2 permits are being denied in their particular
4 I don't know when this issue will be
5 resolved, and I think the people up there
6 have suffered long enough with that
7 developer with the things they had to
8 tolerate with no snow removal and things of
9 that nature and now they are being punished
10 from making improvements to their property
11 and I don't think that that's fair, so I'm
12 going to ask my colleagues if they will
13 agree to send a letter to Judge Minora to
14 reconsider this and maybe just issue certain
15 permits that wouldn't effect storm water.
16 MR. MCGOFF: Any opposition?
17 MS. FANUCCI: No.
18 MR. MCGOFF: Please do so.
19 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Also, if we
20 can write a letter to PPL and ask them where
21 else they intend to spray in the City of
22 Scranton other than Matthew Avenue. I agree
23 with Mr. Dobson and the people on Matthew
24 Avenue that that certainly is not the way to
25 go especially if they are asking people to
1 sign waivers, the herbicides must be toxic
2 of some nature if they are asking for
3 releases from the people, so see if we can't
4 some information from PPL just as to exactly
5 where they are going to spray and what type
6 of herbicide they are using. And that's all
7 I have. Thank you very much.
8 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mrs. Gatelli.
9 Mrs. Fanucci.
10 MS. FANUCCI: I only have two things,
11 Mr. Dobson had brought up about the Recovery
12 Plan and bringing it back on the bat ballot.
13 I'm not sure that can be done. I believe
14 that now the state is in charge and that's
15 the problem, and I will look into see if
16 that is an option. I don't believe I don't
17 believe so, but I could be wrong. It
18 certainly would be, you know, a good option
19 if it could be, you know, approved by the
20 state to let us do that again, so I
21 definitely will check into that.
22 Also, on the Connell building, I
23 understand that people feel that we are
24 using these grants and this money in places,
25 but they don't realize that if we don't use
1 them somebody else is getting them and
2 that's the problem, that's the problem I
3 have. I know it's hard to understand, but
4 if we don't use that money or make use of
5 these projects they go somewhere else, so it
6 will be Reading and you still will be paying
7 for it, but it will be in Reading and it
8 will be in other areas and other cities and
9 other parts of the state, so you still will
10 be paying that money for these projects.
11 So when you are saying, "What am I
12 getting out of it," you are getting the fact
13 that at least it is in your own city and
14 that maybe when that happens that will be
15 job creation and there will be benefits for
16 you. You will not get anything out of it if
17 it goes somewhere else, so that is why I
18 will always vote to make sure that we get as
19 many grants as we can get and as much as any
20 part of economic development we can get our
21 hands on I will be part of it and certainly
22 will want to happen for our city.
23 I understand that it's a lot of
24 money, and it is a lot of money when you
25 look at this building, in fact, I was there
1 today. When you see that building it is an
2 absolutely beautiful building and it could
3 be a beautiful building again. It is going
4 to take a lot of money, and it's
5 unfortunate, but it is not as unfortunate as
6 a building sitting there like it is now.
7 That is a waste and in ten more years it
8 will take six times the amount of money as
9 it's taking now to redo the building.
10 So, you know, I would rather the
11 money here and I will take the money as much
12 as we can get it because if we don't someone
13 else will. And that is all I have.
14 Oh, no, one more thing, I'm sorry,
15 on Danielle and Company, it is a small
16 business she has in town and she is
17 expanding. She does soaps and things of
18 that nature, lotions and creams and all her
19 own products. She is selling them currently
20 I believe it's like over 100 stores right
21 now. She is currently trying to expand her
22 business and she is looking to bring on
23 eventually salespeople, consultants, more
24 business people and try to expand it to even
25 I think sell to hotels and things of that
1 nature, so that is it a very nice project
2 and it's going to see her growing because
3 she hasn't really been out there that long
4 and it seems to be taking off and that to me
5 is a good thing. So that is all I have.
6 Thank you.
7 MR. MCGOFF: Mr. Courtright.
8 MR. COURTRIGHT: I'd just like to
9 congratulate the law enforcement officers
10 that captured this 16-year-old that appears
11 to be the one that was reeking havoc
12 throughout this city and possibly the one
13 that raped an individual in West Scranton.
14 I know this individual had a lot of people
15 concerned and upset, so I don't know all of
16 the officers involved so I don't want to
17 mention any names, I might miss somebody.
18 And just one other thing, I had an
19 opportunity for the first time ever to be in
20 the Southern Union building, I had to go
21 down there this week for something, and I
22 had never been in there before, it's an
23 unbelievably beautiful building inside and
24 everything in there appears to be state of
25 the art, but the interesting think I found
1 out when I was in there is Merrill Lynch is
2 occupying the one floor, and I am being told
3 that they are not taking advantage of the
4 KOZ. They do not take advantage of the fact
5 that they are in a KOZ which to me, I was
6 very surprised at that, so I know a lot of
7 times when we hear people not for the
8 Southern Union building what I would like to
9 say, you know, Mr. Donahue that bought, he
10 did not but that from the city, we didn't
11 sell it to him, Southern Union sold it to
12 him, if he got a good deal more power to
13 him, but I just wanted to make that known
14 and I was told that Merrill Lynch did not
15 take advantage of the KOZ down there, and
16 that's all I have. Thank you.
17 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr.
18 Courtright. Fifth order, Mrs. Garvey.
19 MS. GARVEY: FOR INTRODUCTION - A
20 RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER
21 APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS FOR THE CITY OF
22 SCRANTON TO ENTER INTO A LOAN AGREEMENT AND
23 MAKE A LOAN FROM THE COMMERCIAL INDUSTRIAL
24 REVOLVING LOAN PROGRAM, PROJECT NO. 150.21
25 IN AN AMOUNT NOT TO EXCEED $25,000.00 TO
1 DANIELLE AND COMPANY, INC. TO ASSIST AN
2 ELIGIBLE PROJECT.
3 MR. MCGOFF: At this time I'll
4 entertain a motion that Item 5-B be
5 introduced into it's proper committee.
6 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.
7 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
8 MR. MCGOFF: On the question? All
9 in favor signify by saying aye.
10 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
11 MS. GATELLI: Aye.
12 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
13 MR. MCGOFF: Aye. Opposed? The
14 ayes have it and so moved.
15 MS. GARVEY: SIXTH ORDER. NO
16 BUSINESS AT THIS TIME. SEVENTH ORDER. 7-A.
17 FOR CONSIDERATION BY THE COMMITTEE ON
18 COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT FOR ADOPTION -
19 RESOLUTION NO. 109, 2009 -
20 AMENDING RESOLUTION NO. 55, 2008 ENTITLED "
21 A RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER
22 APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO APPLY FOR AND
23 EXECUTE A GRANT FOR HOUSING AND
24 REDEVELOPMENT ASSISTANCE (HRA) IN THE AMOUNT
25 OF FIVE HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS $500,000.00
1 THROUGH THE COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
2 DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNITY AND ECONOMIC
3 DEVELOPMENT (DCED); AND IF THE APPLICATION
4 IS SUCCESSFUL TO COORDINATE THE USE OF THE
5 GRANT FUNDS FOR THE PROJECT TO BE NAMED AS
6 THE "CONNELL BUILDING" WITH
7 "JEFFERSON-WERNER, LLC", THE DEVELOPER, OR
8 ITS DESIGNEE TO REFLECT THE CHANGE OF THE
9 DEVELOPER AND RECIPIENT OF THE GRANT FROM
10 JEFFERSON-WERNER, LLC TO SCRANTON-CONNELL,
12 MR. MCGOFF: What is the
13 recommendation of the Chairperson for the
14 Committee on Community Development?
15 MS. FANUCCI: As Chairperson for the
16 Committee on Community Development, I
17 recommend final passage of Item 7-A.
18 MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.
19 MR. MCGOFF: On the question? Roll
20 call, please?
21 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans. Mrs.
23 MS. GATELLI: Yes.
24 MR. COOLICAN: Ms. Fanucci.
25 MS. FANUCCI: Yes.
1 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
2 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
3 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
4 MR. MCGOFF: Yes. I hereby declare
5 Item 7-A legally and lawfully adopted.
6 MS. GARVEY: FOR CONSIDERATION BY THE
7 COMMITTEE ON COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT - FOR
8 ADOPTION - RESOLUTION NO. 110, 2009 -
9 AMENDING RESOLUTION NO.56, 2008 ENTITLED "A
10 RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER
11 APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO APPLY FOR AND
12 EXECUTE A GRANT APPLICATION FOR MIXED USE
13 FACILITY FINANCING INITIATIVE (MUFFI) IN THE
14 AMOUNT OF ONE MILLION DOLLARS $1,000,000.00
15 THROUGH THE PENNSYLVANIA HOUSING FINANCE
16 AGENCY (PHFA); ACCEPTING AND DISBURSING THE
17 GRANT IF THE APPLICATION IS SUCCESSFUL; AND
18 TO COORDINATE THE USE OF THE GRANT FUNDS
19 WITH "JEFFERSON- WERNER, LLC", THE
20 DEVELOPER, OR ITS DESIGNEE FOR THE PROJECT
21 NAMED AS "THE CONNELL BUILDING," TO REFLECT
22 THE CHANGE OF THE DEVELOPER AND RECIPIENT OF
23 THE GRANT FROM JEFFERSON-WERNER, LLC TO
24 SCRANTON-CONNELL, LP.
25 MR. MCGOFF: What is the
1 recommendation of the Chairperson for the
2 Committee on Community Development?
3 MS. FANUCCI: As Chairperson for the
4 Committee on Community Development, I
5 recommend final passage of Item 7-B.
6 MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.
7 MR. MCGOFF: On the question? Roll
8 call, please?
9 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans. Mrs.
11 MS. GATELLI: Yes.
12 MR. COOLICAN: Ms. Fanucci.
13 MS. FANUCCI: Yes.
14 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
15 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
16 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
17 MR. MCGOFF: Yes. I hereby declare
18 Item 7-B legally and lawfully adopted.
19 MS. GARVEY: 7-C. FOR CONSIDERATION
20 BY THE COMMITTEE ON COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT -
21 FOR ADOPTION - RESOLUTION NO. 111, 2009 -
22 AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER APPROPRIATE
23 CITY OFFICIALS FOR THE CITY OF SCRANTON TO
24 ENTER INTO A SUBORDINATION AGREEMENT TO
25 SUBORDINATE ITS RECORDED MORTGAGE DATED MAY
1 27, 2004 IN THE PRINCIPAL AMOUNT OF
2 $250,000.00, SECURED UPON PROPERTIES LOCATED
3 IN THE CITY OF SCRANTON MORE COMMONLY KNOWN
4 AS 119 JEFFERSON AVENUE AND 617-619
5 LACKAWANNA AVENUE, TO A MORTGAGE IN THE
6 AMOUNT OF $1,850,000.00 THAT 119 JEFFERSON
7 ASSOCIATES, LLC INTENDS TO GRANT ON SAID
8 PROPERTY TO PENN SECURITY BANK AND TRUST
11 MR. MCGOFF: What is the
12 recommendation of the Chairperson for the
13 Committee on Community Development?
14 MS. FANUCCI: As Chairperson for the
15 Committee on Community Development, I
16 recommend final passage of Item 7-C.
17 MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.
18 MR. MCGOFF: On the question? Roll
19 call, please?
20 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans. Mrs.
22 MS. GATELLI: Yes.
23 MR. COOLICAN: Ms. Fanucci.
24 MS. FANUCCI: Yes.
25 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
1 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
2 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
3 MR. MCGOFF: Yes. I hereby declare
4 Item 7-C legally and lawfully adopted.
5 MR. COURTRIGHT: Before Mrs. Garvey
6 reads 7-D, I'd like to make a motion to
8 MR. MCGOFF: Second. On the
10 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question,
11 some of us had taken a look up there and it
12 appears that there would be some difficulty
13 if, in fact, the traffic light was put in
14 there, so we are going to talk to some
15 people and see if there can be an
16 alternative possibility, stop-signs or
17 something else, so we are going to table it
18 until we can look into that a little bit
20 MR. MCGOFF: All in favor of a motion
21 to table Item 7-D signify by saying aye.
22 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
23 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
24 MR. MCGOFF: Aye. Opposed?
25 MS. GATELLI: No.
1 MR. MCGOFF: The ayes have it and so
2 moved. Motion to adjourn.
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.
4 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you for your
2 C E R T I F I C A T E
4 I hereby certify that the proceedings and
5 evidence are contained fully and accurately in the
6 notes of testimony taken by me at the hearing of the
7 above-captioned matter and that the foregoing is a true
8 and correct transcript of the same to the best of my
CATHENE S. NARDOZZI, RPR
13 OFFICIAL COURT REPORTER